“Thank you for the drive home,” said Holly.
“No problem.” Peter put the car in park and shifted in his seat to look at her.
“Would you like to come in? McCall is coming by to talk. I’ve sent him a text to let him know I home. He said he’d be here any minute.”
“You trust McCall?”
Holly hesitated and then laughed suddenly.
“What is it?”
“Nothing. I just all of a sudden remembered the very first time I met you. I thought McCall was making ‘improper advances’ and was crying out in alley and there you were.”
“I remember. I was hiding from Matt and Crocodiles.”
“That seems such a long time ago.”
“Over a year.”
“Is it really?” She smiled. “Poor McCall. He ended up with a ridiculously high bill and I skipped out on him. All on your recommendation if you remember.”
Peter chuckled. “I do indeed. I remember watching from my table as the waiter brought your plates over. I also saw you duck out.”
“And Victor hadn’t actually done a thing. Not only that but he forgave and got, helped me get film roles and when Grant wanted to drop me from Cold Wars it was Victor who fought for me.”
Peter nodded. “So you trust him.”
“I do.” A beam from headlights shone through the rear window and Holly turned to look out. “He’s here. Come on.”
McCall stared, from one of them to the other, as if expecting someone was about to start laughing and admit the whole thing had been a joke. But neither of them moved. Holly didn’t even blink, as she stared up at Victor from her place on the couch, waiting for him to say something.
Peter took a sip from the drink Holly had given him, but he didn’t taste it. He was too busy focusing on McCall’s expression, trying to gauge it.
“You’re sure about this?” Victor said at last.
“Grant admitted it to me himself,” said Holly.
“There couldn’t have been any mistake?”
“No. I’m afraid not.”
Victor let out a long drawn-out breath and reached blindly for a chair to sink down into. “I’ve known Grant for years.”
“I’m sorry. I know he was a friend-”
McCall shook his head. “No. Not exactly a friend. But I didn’t think-, I’m sorry I just don’t know what to say. Peter, please believe me, I had no idea about any of this.”
The man sounded sincere and there was something in his expression that convinced Peter.
“What do you think I should do?” asked Holly.
“Yes. I have to do something, don’t I? If I don’t, I’m turning a blind eye to murder or manslaughter, whatever you want to call it, either way Grant is responsible for Lionel’s death.”
“You don’t have any proof anymore. Perhaps when you still had the photographs and the proof Grant paid Lionel five years ago, but as it stands now it will just be your word against that of a very powerful and rich man.”
Holly thought about this for several long minutes. Peter saw her slowly set her chin and square her shoulders. He couldn’t help feeling a mix of fondness, but also regret. Whatever she was deciding in her head, it wasn’t going to be the easy path for her.
“Then I’ll just have to make my word convincing,” she announced at last.
“What do you mean?” asked Peter, setting his glass down and leaning forward.
“We go to the police with what we know.”
“You’d think they’d investigate it?”
“It’s not just my word….is it?” Holly glanced at Peter doubtfully.
“Of course I’ll back you up. I was there. So was Clint. But,” he cautioned, “Linda won’t. And without any proof-”
“I know. They might not believe it. But they should give us the benefit of the doubt enough to look into it. We have no reason to lie. We go and we lay it all out as clearly and as convincingly as we can.”
“Grant will hit back. He’ll have to,” said Victor. “If word leaked out that you’d told this story about him and he did nothing in response people would assume his guilt. So he’d hit back; hard and fast knowing Grant.”
“What do you think he’ll do?” asked Peter.
“I don’t know. Go after Holly’s career for one thing. Try and use his influence to break it, look into her past to see if there’s anything he could use against her. The fact that she dated Alan, and Alan is indirectly involved in this would raise a few eyebrows and he’d use that against her. Not to mention,” he added, a little sheepishly, “her connection to you. He’ll dredge up the triangle the tabloids tried to sell between the three of you.”
Holly nodded. “Alright. I’m prepared for that. It’s still what I have to do. But Peter, should stay out of it.”
“What? No!” Peter said firmly.
“Yes. Your career is only just taking off again, you’ve just begun to rebuild your life and if Grant actually will play dirty, you shouldn’t be involved.”
Peter let out a scoff. “You can’t stop me. And I don’t care about my bloody ‘career’.” He made air quotes. “I’m only here-. I’m not interested in it. This is more important.”
They held eye contract for a long a moment and then Holly relented.
“Alright. Then it’s decided.”
“No. Don’t decide,” said Victor. “Sleep on it. Give it a night and see how you feel in the morning.”
“I don’t know,” said Holly doubtfully. “The last time we decided to wait a night on this, we lost our evidence and Grant found out everything.”
“I just don’t think you should rush into anything. This is a very important decision and you had a conversation with Grant tonight that shook you. I think for your own sake, you should wait and see how you feel and what you think in the morning. Please.”
Holly sighed. “Alright,” she agreed reluctantly. “I’ll sleep on it.”